I know this sounds like an oxymoron, but sketching with your eraser can be a game-changer for kids and adults!
I’m talking about those little pink erasers at the end of your #2 pencil. I like to use a Magic Rub eraser for actual erasing, but for experimenting with your composition or to get the size or shape of an object just right, nothing beats a quick sketch with your eraser.
Of course, you can’t go too far in your drawing with this technique – it’s not useful for doing anything with detail. But to quickly map out a composition or the size and placement of an object, it’s perfect.
Once you have a rough eraser sketch you’re happy with, simply draw over your eraser lines with your pencil and wipe away the eraser shavings.
In my blog post, “Pink Gold – Sketching with Erasers!” I show a good example of this and explain more about it.
Students love to use their erasers to quickly try out different ideas without having to worry about erasing lots of unwanted pencil lines at the end.
My thoughts on this week’s inspiring quote (below) show how this can be a useful technique for teachers as well!
An Inspiring Quote:
“Art is a place for children to learn to trust their ideas, themselves, and to explore what is possible.” ~ MaryAnn F. Kohl
One of the things that makes art so important for kids to have in their school day is that, unlike other subjects, there isn’t only one right answer. Through making art, kids can express their ideas, experiment, be creative, and explore possibilities without the fear of being “wrong”.
But when we as adults draw (or paint) on a child’s artwork, we actually inhibit their growth. By doing this we place our decision-making process onto their work, taking away some of their ownership of it. This can cause kids to question their own ability and judgment, and to trust themselves a little bit less each time it happens.
So the next time a child asks you to draw or paint something on their paper that they’re having trouble with, here are a couple of options you might try.
For general layout or shape issues, you can use the eraser sketching method in today’s TIP of the WEEK. That way the final lines on their work will be their own.
For something more detailed (or for painting help) having some scraps of paper handy that you can sketch or paint on and leave with them at their desk helps kids feel supported while still allowing them to own their work.